Marietta Museum of History director Dan Cox believes the tree was planted in 1867 just after the Civil War. Cox said the tree is now dead, and he hopes when the city takes it down the museum can have some of the wood.
"I hate to lose it. I'm hoping the city will let us have some pieces of wood on it so we can date some of the rings," Cox said.
The tree would most likely have been planted by the Fletcher family, who owned Kennesaw House at the time, Cox said.
Cox has a picture of Kennesaw House from 1867 showing the tree, and three others, planted in front of the building.
Kennesaw House, which now houses the Marietta Museum of History, is one of the most historic buildings in the city as the location where Andrews' Raiders stayed before instigating the Great Locomotive Chase.
The Fletcher family, who came to Marietta from Massachusetts by way of Savannah, purchased Kennesaw House from John Glover, Marietta's first mayor, who built the building as a cotton warehouse in 1848, Cox said.
Dix Fletcher bought the building from Glover in 1855 and turned it into a four-story hotel, which aside from the Marietta Hotel located on the south side of Marietta Square owned by Henry Greene Cole, was the nicest hotel in the city.
Because Cole was "a Yankee spy," when General Sherman burned much of Marietta in his march to the sea, the Marietta Hotel was saved, as was the Fletcher Hotel, since Dix Fletcher was Coal's father-in-law, Cox said.
Cox said Saturday morning a museum visitor was chatting with him about the dead tree.
"He said it was a shame it can't talk, but that's probably why it lived so long," Cox said.